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Truth Be Told

Blues TravelerAudio CD
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)

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Audio CD, 2003 --  

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Blues Traveler - Suzie Cracks The Whip


Blues Traveler

John Popper: Vocals, Harmonica

Chandler Kinchla: Guitars

Ben Wilson: Keyboards

Tad Kinchla: Bass

Brendan Hill: Drums, Percussion

It's not every band that's still staking out new musical territory and embracing fresh challenges more than 20 years into their career, but that's the case with Blues Traveler. Having long ago graduated ... Read more in Amazon's Blues Traveler Store

Visit Amazon's Blues Traveler Store
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (August 5, 2003)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Sanctuary Records
  • ASIN: B0000AC8P3
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #189,832 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Unable to Get Free
2. Eventually (I'll Come Around)
3. Sweet and Broken
4. My Blessed Pain
5. Let Her & Let Go
6. Thinnest of Air
7. Can't See Why
8. Stumble and Fall
9. This Ache
10. Mount Normal
11. The One
12. Partner in Crime

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

(2003 'Sanctuary') (47:40/12) Eher sanfte Töne von den ehemaligen Vorreitern des Punk/Blues / rather quiet notes from what used to be the band on the forefront of punk/blues. JOHN POPPER - vov/hca, CHANDLER KINCHLA - gtr, BEN WILSON - kbds, TAD KINCHLA - bass, BRENDAN HILL - drums.

For every moment of transcendent groove, the jam-band ethos seems to have generated an eon of aimless instrumental indulgence. It's a mindset that bedeviled even icons like the Grateful Dead when they endeavored to construct something as elegantly--and elusively--simple as a song. Blues Traveler has hardly been immune from the foibles of excess, which makes this focused, song-oriented album an instant career high point. It's no mean feat to be both disciplined and adventurous but, with the able assistance of veteran producer Don Gehman, that's just the trick John Popper and company have turned here. For his part, mouth harp virtuoso Popper makes more like the Stax horns than Satriani, often content to punctuate his band's ever potent rhythms with flourishes as earthy as they are saturnine. But the real news here is the band's rededication to songcraft, an ethos that yields gems from the Little Feat dynamic of "Eventually" and jazz/R&B touches of "My Blessed Pain" and "Thinnest of Air" to the muscular pop hooks of "Let Her & Let Go" and rewarding funk-meets-classicism of "This Ache." It's a tack that's challenged Popper to warm new dimensions of vocal expressiveness as well, and the band to focus its powerhouse abilities into a gritty wallop. --Jerry McCulley

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Truth IS Told... September 26, 2003
Format:Audio CD
What could be, quite possibly the best CD of 2003, could also go quite unnoticed. Debuting at number 147 on the Billboard Charts, it's a shame more people didn't stick around with Blues Traveler after the release of "Four" almost some 10 years ago. This CD marks the official "new lineup" for the band (adding Ben Wilson on keyboards and Tad Kinchla replacing the great Bobby Sheehan on bass).
"Truth Be Told," the follow up to 2001's "Bridge" is an amazing listen from front to back - a true epiphany for a band who seemed to be in the 'rebuilding stage' in recent years.
The CD opens with "Unable To Get Free," where a Pink Floyd-esque sway compliments John Popper's harmonica stylings (which throughout this CD seem less the forefront of the music compared to earlier releases). "Free" is followed up by the bluesy "Eventually (I'll Come Around)" and then by, what could possibly be Are You Blue's song of the year, "Sweet And Broken." This track is an amazing song with a "Hook"-like quality (their 2nd hit from "Four"). The harmony-laden sing-a-long chorus is accompanied by beautiful lyrics that seem to be a staple of Popper throughout the CD.
Other standout tracks include the infectious "Let Her And Let Go" where popper laments "It's easy to remember, but it's better to forget, you never get the one you dream of, you get to dream with the one you get," and the jumping upbeat rhythm of "Thinnest of Air." Rounding out the CD is "Partner In Crime" a upbeat rocker that shows BT has much more to offer then one would imagine.
I would recommend this CD to anyone and everyone.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Refreshing, Meaty Blues Traveler August 5, 2003
Format:Audio CD
As soon as you're hit with the raunchy opening notes of track 1, "Unable To Get Free", it's clear that this album is a healthy return to form after the slight departure of BRIDGE. Songs like "Unable to Get Free", "Eventually I'll Come Around", and "Can't See Why" (which features an outstanding chorus) are as meaty as "Carolina Blues" or even "Sweet Talking Hippie".
The album's most similar cousin is probably STRAIGHT ON TILL MORNING, but there is less over-production here than on that album. TRUTH BE TOLD thankfully doesn't seem to contain a "forcefully manufactured" attempt at a hit single (like BRIDGE's "Girl Inside My Head" or STRAIGHT ON's "Most Precarious"). As such, many of the songs are stronger and flow more naturally than most of the songs from the band's last several albums.
Digging a little deeper, there seems to be more of a focus on song structure on this album. For the most part, this is a good thing. Many of the songs feature bridges that change the song's direction (most notably "Sweet & Broken" and "Unable To Get Free").
Having said that, overall this album contains many things we've grown to expect from a BT album. A couple of the songs feature some of John Popper's classic "fast talking". Nothing is quite as eloquent as the legendary final verse in "Hook" mind you, but parts of "Thinnest of Air" are reminiscent the vocals in "Reach Me", and "This Ache" feels a little like a heavier (and better) version of "Felicia". And of course, many songs (especially "Can't See Why" and "This Ache") contain some killer harmonica solos.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars New CD - Old/New Directions August 6, 2003
Format:Audio CD
Gone are the days of the extensive jams, arpeggiated notes / scale runs and egregious tittering of instruments...
Here today is the new BT album ripe with old and new conventions.
Rather than mire down with my own self analysis or track-by-track, I prefer to provide a capsulated review of this new album, and leave it up to your own interpretation...
This new LP heralds a new 'era' for BT following the unfortunate lineup changes over the past few years -- it's thick with rich blues/r&b/jazz tones and a lot less 'pop-oriented' and radio-friendly than their past fare.
More meaty and less radio-conscious than their efforts since 'Four', this is a TRUE fans album looking to get away from their poppier efforts, and wanting more blues. Travel less for it here (sorry for bad pun!)
Each song feels organic, personal and dirty... confessional at points (track: "Blessed Pain"), romp-pop at others (track: "Let Her & Let Go"), surprising (track: "Eventually" --> John stretches his voice to the higher registers without going full falsetto), among others.
What prevents me from giving it a full-5 stars is the sometimes muddy and overwashed, yet clear production. Melodies, runs and trills are there, just a bit too buried at certain moments.
Give this album the shot it deserves.. BT are truly one of the hardest working "jam/blues" MUSICIANS out there these days.. they warrant your attention and your dollars.
However, if you are looking for 'Runaround' part 2, don't expect it here... Their previous album, 'The Bridge' had closer moments.. and in my opinion, a weaker album than this.
Keypoint of this album and band is John's voice... it's gritty, 'soulful', sad, joyous, elastic, etc... harmonica aside, his voice is truly an instrument.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Old BT Fan
I really overlooked this cd when I first got it. It is now one of my favorite Blues Traveler recordings. Read more
Published on October 10, 2008 by Pen Name
4.0 out of 5 stars To tell you the truth
As were the first two albums I bought by Blues Traveler, this is their true sound as it should be. A bit rough and unpolished, and yet just perfect!
Published on March 22, 2006 by Mr. B.
5.0 out of 5 stars The Blues band is back and better than ever.
I stopped listening to the Blues Traveler in around 1997. I decided to listen to those loser punk-rock bands. Read more
Published on July 10, 2004 by Charles Passantino
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent effort for Chapter Two
When Bob Sheehan passed away, Blues Traveler reinvented itself with a new bassist and the addition of Ben Wilson on keys. I can't imagine them now without this line-up. Read more
Published on February 29, 2004
5.0 out of 5 stars A great one to have...
If you like rock, jam bands, or jazz, you will love this CD. Just slightly rockier than Blues Traveler's older CDs, you will be impressed my the great harmony and musicianship... Read more
Published on November 28, 2003 by B. Fried
3.0 out of 5 stars Some Highlights But Not Quite Prime Time
On Truth Be Told, Blues Traveller seemed to focus on developing more focused songs. There is a noticeable lack of emphasis on the jamming. Read more
Published on November 22, 2003 by G. J Wiener
4.0 out of 5 stars Good and growing on me.
I've bought every BT album. Here's my ranking of their previous efforts to give you an idea of my taste. Read more
Published on October 3, 2003 by "kahackert"
3.0 out of 5 stars Mixed Bag
I am a faithful fan of Blues Traveler. I've seen them in concert three times, I think. Maybe four if I count a festival. I love their music. Read more
Published on October 2, 2003 by Jim
3.0 out of 5 stars Where's the Jam?
Was this a Blues Traveler CD? Don't get me wrong, I am all about a band growing and I will buy every BT CD from now until forever, but this CD was nothing like any of the first. Read more
Published on October 2, 2003
4.0 out of 5 stars New Explorations
Blues Traveler manages to do something unique on this album: move forward while getting back to what makes them a great band. Read more
Published on September 23, 2003 by David A. Tyler
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